Are the Animals That Make Applegate Products Humanely Raised?

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  • Absolutely. This is a core tenet of Applegate. We are proud that many of our farms carry the GAP and Certified Humane seals.

    All of our animals are treated humanely and with respect, and our farms are certified by either Certified Humane or GAP. Our humane livestock practices include:

    • Allowing animals to exercise their natural behaviors and instincts. No crates or cages.

    • Raising animals with sufficient space and shelter against the elements.

    • Animals have plenty of fresh food, a vegetarian diet, and clean water.

    • Animals are handled gently and respectfully.

    • Animals are never given antibiotics or hormones.

    • All these requirements are verified through third party audits as well as by internal welfare specialists at Applegate.

    • We have developed our own unique animal welfare standards. You can see this via the “Humanely Raised” statement on our packaging. The standards we have developed (for pork, beef, and poultry) have strict requirements that are verified through third party audits and also by internal welfare specialists at Applegate.

    • Our standards include Humanely Raised on family farms in an environment that promotes natural behavior of the animals through more room to move about freely. Our animals are fed an all vegetarian grain or grass diet as each species is intended. And we follow humane slaughter practices as suggested by Dr. Temple Grandin (yes, the woman from that great HBO movie).

    • In regard to slaughter, our animals are handled as humanely as possible following our guidelines which, again, were developed by Dr. Grandin, the world renowned authority on the compassionate treatment of animals being raised for food.
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  • 1
    Thanks so much for this info, and for your work. I will thank Donelan's Supermarkets for continuing to find organic and humane products to sell to the general market. I will be buying plenty of Applegate!
    Ilene Bilenky
    Littleton MA
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  • 1
    "more room to move about freely" What exactly is the space allowed per animal, per type of animal: poultry, cattle, swine?
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  • Thank you for your question.

    Animal welfare is a top priority at Applegate, and we have developed our own animal welfare standards, which correspond to the “Humanely Raised” statement on our packaging. The standards we’ve developed for pork, beef, and poultry have strict requirements that are verified through third party audits and also by internal welfare specialists at Applegate.

    Our standards ensure that the meat and poultry used in our products come from animals that are humanely raised on family farms in an environment that allows them to move about freely and exhibit natural behaviors, such as rooting and pecking. Animals are also fed an all vegetarian grain or grass diet without antibiotics, hormones or animal by-products. Our humane slaughter practices follow the guidelines set forth by Dr. Temple Grandin, a world renowned authority on humane animal husbandry.

    You can view video of some of our farms on our YouTube channel.
    http://youtu.be/RoEAvIISB0c
    http://youtu.be/tyxYZkTQJOE
    http://youtu.be/zVXBVq2Pn34

    As the videos demonstrate, it's important to note that our animal are not confined to a tight space. The standards listed here are representative of the animal's allocation of open space (barn, pasture, etc)

    Our animal space requirements are as follows;

    Turkey
    Hens - 2 sq/ft/bird
    Toms - 2.8 - 3.1 sq/ft/bird

    Chicken
    1.17 - 1.27 sq/ft/bird

    Pork
    Up to 12/sq/ft/hog (space scales up proportionally as animal grows)

    Beef
    Australian & Uruguay Cattle - 5 to 20 acres/steer
    Domestic Beef - follows the GAP standard,
    http://www.globalanimalpartnership.org/
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  • Do you have plans to have your products certified humane? I've noticed that many of the meats I buy are now going to that designation in addition to being certified organic.. Thanks!
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  • 1
    Michelle, because we use two high-standard certifiers, Certified Humane and the Global Animal Partnership, it makes it challenging logistically for us to carry their logos on our packaging. The finished product may contain meat from a Certified Humane certified supplier, a GAP certified supplier, or both. We are looking into simplifying this so that we can be clearer on our packages about our practices.
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  • Hello I was advised that you are no longer on the list at certifiedhumane.org ? Can you please advise why ?

    This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
    CERTIFICATION!.
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  • I recently read the book "Eating Animals" and am very concerned with the state of "factory farming" in our country. I have read that your livestock is pasture raised but the website does not say "100% Pasture Raised". Are the animals processed by your company transported to feeder lots several weeks prior to slaughter or are they allowed to feed out on the pasture on which they are raised? Also are the slaughterhouses at which they are processed under high scrutiny to assure the most humane death possible for the animals?

    This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled
    100% Grass Fed?.
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  • I’m sad
    Hello, I just read that your product is no longer Certified Humane and I am just so saddened by this. I only eat meat when the animals have lived and died a humane life. This is very hard to come by, usually. But the exception had been Applegate....which I would go out of my way to buy....shopping at one store over another. Oh please......it would be wonderful if you could work to have your products Certified Humane again.
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  • I am interested in in an answer to Beth's question as well...in case it was missed, she asked: "Are the animals processed by your company transported to feeder lots several weeks prior to slaughter or are they allowed to feed out on the pasture on which they are raised? Also are the slaughterhouses at which they are processed under high scrutiny to assure the most humane death possible for the animals?"

    Thank you.
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  • I am also interested in this topic..certified humane and have noticed still no direct answer has been offered and I also noticed that in one answer at the top, it was stated " many of our farms carry the GAP and Certified Humane seals." Whats going on with the ones that are not and which products are the ones that are not GAP and Certified Humane?
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  • Hi, I'm wondering why some important questions here are not being answered. See Jenn M from 4 months ago, Beth Wilber from 2 months ago, Tamsen from 1 month ago, etc.

    Also, can you elaborate on your comment from 5 months ago:
    Beef
    Australian & Uruguay Cattle - 5 to 20 acres/steer
    Domestic Beef - follows the GAP standard,

    What is the GAP standard here?

    Thanks.
    Rick
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  • I also wish you'd give an email address to contact you at directly. No?
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  • 2
    With modern technology I would like to have web cams installed across the country so I can believe what I am told. I want to be completely satisfied that the meat I eat has come from a family farm where the animals are treated humanely and have adequate space for their entire lives.
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  • 3
    Good point Roberta. If they have nothing to hide, why not? I wish Applegate would do that. It would be very innovative.
    I also wish they would reply to the questions on this forum. The fact that they haven't responded to ANYTHING in 5 months makes me question their practices. I'm no longer convinced they treat their animals humanely. I'm not saying they don't; just that it needs more research.

    ANSWER YOUR FORUM QUESTIONS!
    • Rick - thanks again for calling us out for not responding to this thread.

      As Gerry explained elsewhere in the forum, we weren't getting email notifications of followup comments and questions and clearly weren't checking all of our pages. An embarrassing mistake on our end and one that we won't be making again.
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  • I second Rick here on the need to respond to the GAP space requirement. Their listed standards, although perhaps still in the draft stage, are not exceptionally clear. The GAP standards concerning slaughter are not listed as well. It would helpful for someone to clarify this. At this level and price of meat product, it should simply be a given the customers are a little more informed and inclined to discuss every aspect of its production. Thank you.
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  • Joel, I'm not sure if you've had a chance to look at the GAP website. They do a good job of explaining their method in detail. http://www.globalanimalpartnership.or...
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  • As to your comment that " In regard to slaughter, our animals are handled as humanely as possible following our guidelines which, again, were developed by Dr. Grandin, the world renowned authority on the compassionate treatment of animals being raised for food." What are these standards? Do you publish these standards? It is not enough to just say "humanely as possible." Specifically are pigs submerged alive into boiling water? If so, you consider this humane?
    • Katie, we do not or ever will submerge our pigs alive in boiling water. Our standards for beef and pork are those created and written by Dr. Temple Grandin, Professor of Animal Science. You can learn more about Dr. Grandin's work here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temple_G....

      All our poultry processing plants have verification programs to ensure that animals are humanely slaughtered, and 3rd party auditors trained by both the USDA and the Professional Animal Auditing Certification Organization (PAACO). Several Applegate staff members are also PAACO certified and audit the facilities regularly.
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  • 3
    I guess just not eating animals is the best way to make sure one is not participating in brutality.
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  • EMPLOYEE
    I’m confident
    2
    Community, in response to the questions that have not been answered within this thread. The following information should cover those. The majority of our beef comes from Organic producers in Uruguay and Australia, where they do not use feedlots, and where the geography is better suited to raising animals on grass than in the US. If you are interested in learning more about those farms, you can view a video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPznYU...

    The cattle we source from the US have access to pasture, but their diets are supplemented with grain. These cattle are raised using humane animal standards certified by the Global Animal Partnership (GAP), which you can learn more about here http://www.globalanimalpartnership.org/

    All of our Organic beef products are made from 100% grass fed beef.

    In regards to slaughter, our standards for beef and pork are those created and written by Dr. Temple Grandin, Professor of Animal Science. You can learn more about Dr. Grandin's work here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temple_G....

    All our poultry processing plants have verification programs to ensure that animals are humanely slaughtered, and 3rd party auditors trained by both the USDA and the Professional Animal Auditing Certification Organization (PAACO). Several Applegate staff members are also PAACO certified and audit the facilities regularly.

    We have once source in the US that is not certified by either GAP or Certified Humane, due to their personal preferences. In that case, a PACCO certified auditor from Applegate does regular farm audits, and the animal treatment is also verified by a 3rd party outside of Applegate.
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  • 3
    2 square feet is all that's allowed for a chicken? That's nothing! I thought that I was paying more for a reason! Guess not. Glad that I Googled first!
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  • Pork
    Up to 10/sq/ft/hog (space scales up proportionally as animal grows)

    What about sows? do your farmers ever use gestation crates?
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